FOSSILS found in Castellon province may have revealed the existence of a previously undiscovered species of dinosaur.

Scientists said on Thursday that they had unearthed a partial skeleton of a species at Cinctorres that helps provide a deeper understanding of a highly successful group of meat-eaters that hunted on land and in the water.

The discovery suggests the Iberian peninsula may have been a diverse area for medium to large-bodied spinosaurids and sheds light on their origin and evolution.

Living about 126 to 127 million years ago, the bipedal dinosaur, named Protathlitis cinctorrensis, was about 10 to 11 meters long and weighed about two tons.

It was part of a group called spinosaurs whose biggest member, Spinosaurus, was among the largest meat-eating dinosaurs on record.

Spinosaurs, in turn, were part of a larger assemblage called theropods that included all the meat-eating dinosaurs, including the likes of the massive Tyrannosaurus from North America and Giganotosaurus from South America, as well as birds.

The newly discovered dinosaur has been identified from a partial skeleton – the right upper jawbone, one tooth, and five vertebrae.

Other dinosaurs excavated at Cinctorres include a large, long-necked quadrupedal plant-eater, two smaller bipedal plant-eaters and another theropod that was not as big as Protathlitis.

Fossils of various crocodiles, sharks and other fish also have been dug up.


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